England v India, Champions Trophy, final, Edgbaston June 22, 2013

Top-class top order v new-ball firepower

India's top-order batting has been the biggest success story of the tournament, but on Sunday they'll be up against an incisive fast-bowling attack

Whichever way you look at it, India and England have been the two best teams in the 2013 Champions Trophy. India have won all four of their matches; England have won three and lost one - these two are the only sides in the tournament who've won more games than they've lost. India's average of 65.46 runs per wicket is by far the best of all teams in the tournament, while England's 35 is comfortably the second-best; ditto with the run rates of 5.93 (India) and 5.65 (England). As a bowling unit, India have taken the most wickets in the tournament - 37 - followed by England's 30. The difference between the run rate and the economy rate is 1.27 for India, the highest, and next-best for England (0.32). It's only fair that these two teams will compete for the right to be called the champions of the last edition of the Champions Trophy.

India's top-order batting has been the biggest success story of the tournament. Shikhar Dhawan has already amassed 332 runs in four innings - the third-highest by any batsman in any edition of the Champions Trophy - and has scored two out of three centuries in this tournament. India's batsmen have also accounted for three of the seven century stands in the tournament so far - two by the openers Dhawan and Rohit Sharma, and one by Dhawan and Dinesh Karthik.

England's top three haven't been as prolific, but they've also all been among the runs. Jonathan Trott has scored 209 runs - the third-highest in the tournament - at a strike rate of amost 90, which aren't bad stats for a batsman who supposedly can't score his runs quickly, while Alastair Cook and Ian Bell, the openers, have three fifties between them. England's middle order is in form too, with Joe Root looking impressive almost every time he has come out to bat in scoring 166 in four innings, while Ravi Bopara has been explosive at the finish, scoring 88 runs off only 61 balls in the tournament.

The flip side of the smashing form for India's top three is the fact that the rest of their batsmen have hardly had a bat. Karthik has faced 84 balls in the entire tournament, Ravindra Jadeja 29, MS Dhoni 26, and Suresh Raina 10. India's top three have accounted for 78% of the bat runs for India; the corresponding percentage for England is 59. It's fair to say that India's middle order hasn't been tested yet, and Sunday could well be an occasion for them to prove their worth.

England and India in Champions Trophy 2013
Team Won/ lost Bat ave Run rate Bowl ave Econ rate 100s/ 50s 100/ 50 p'ships
India 4/ 0 65.46 5.93 23.89 4.66 2/ 5 3/ 4
England 3/ 1 35.00 5.65 28.40 5.33 0/ 6 2/ 5
England and Indian batsmen in the Champions Trophy
Batsman Innings Runs Average Strike rate 100s/ 50s
Shikhar Dhawan 4 332 110.67 99.40 2/ 1
Jonathan Trott 4 209 69.67 89.69 0/ 2
Rohit Sharma 4 168 42.00 76.71 0/ 2
Joe Root 4 166 41.50 90.71 0/ 1
Alastair Cook 4 159 39.75 81.53 0/ 2
Ian Bell 4 141 35.25 74.21 0/ 1
Virat Kohli 4 133 66.50 88.66 0/ 1
Ravi Bopara 3 88 88.00 144.26 0/ 0
Nos.1-3 for India and England in the Champions Trophy
Team Innings Runs Average Strike rate 100s/ 50s % of team runs*
India 12 633 70.33 90.04 2/ 4 78.24
England 12 509 46.27 82.36 0/ 5 58.98
* Bat runs only

The bowling comparison
As a bowling unit, there isn't much to choose between the two sides. England's bowlers had one poor game, when they completely dominated by Kumar Sangakkara, while India conceded more than 300 against South Africa (though they won that one). India's bowlers have taken more wickets at a better average and economy rate, thanks largely to their spinners. Led by Jadeja, India's spin attack has taken 16 wickets at an average of 20.75 and an economy rate of 4.15, figures which even the most optimistic Indian fan wouldn't have bargained for in June in England.

England's star in the bowling department has been James Anderson. He has taken twice as many wickets as the next-best for England, while his economy rate has been outstanding as well. India's most consistent seamer has been Bhuvneshwar Kumar: his 32 overs have gone at only 3.68 per over, though Ishant Sharma is the leading wicket-taker with eight. The disappointment for India has been Umesh Yadav, who has leaked plenty of runs after taking a five-for against Australia in one of the warm-up games. Similarly, Tim Bresnan has been the most expensive among the regular bowlers for England, going at almost a run a ball.

Pace and spin bowling stats for India and England in the Champions Trophy
  Pace Spin Overall
Team Wkts Ave Econ Wkts Ave Econ Wkts Ave Econ
India 17 31.88 4.94 16 20.75 4.15 33 26.48 4.60
England 23 26.52 5.17 6 36.00 5.14 29 28.48 5.16
Indian and England bowlers in the tournament so far
Bowler Overs Wickets Average Econ rate
James Anderson 33 10 12.70 3.84
Ravindra Jadeja 37 10 13.00 3.51
Ishant Sharma 34 8 22.75 5.35
R Ashwin 37 6 27.67 4.48
Bhuvneshwar Kumar 32 6 19.67 3.68
Stuart Broad 31.5 5 35.40 5.56

The Powerplay factor
India's openers have been so strong that the team hasn't yet lost a wicket in the mandatory Powerplays, making scores of 66, 53, 45 and 40 - all without loss - at the ten-over mark in their four matches so far. England's top order has done pretty well too, but it's their bowling at the start which has stood out: they've taken six wickets in the mandatory Powerplay overs, and have conceded only 4.14 runs per over. On Sunday, they'll be up against the best top order of the tournament, and how that mini-battle turns out could well determine the outcome of the final.

In the batting Powerplay, India have the better numbers with both bat and ball. Most teams have lost plenty of wickets during this period, which has impacted their ability to score quickly, but India aren't one of those sides: they've lost only two wickets, and their run rate is the second-best (after New Zealand) among all teams during this period. England, on the other hand, have lost five wickets in 87 balls during the batting Powerplay.

England and India in the mandatory Powerplay, with bat and ball
  Batting Bowling
Team Runs/ Balls Average Run rate Runs/ balls Average Econ rate
India 204/ 228 - 5.36 201/ 240 40.20 5.02
England 164/ 210 54.67 4.68 145/ 210 24.16 4.14
England and India in the batting Powerplay, with bat and ball
  Batting Bowling
Team Runs/ Balls Average Run rate Runs/ Balls Average Econ rate
India 69/ 55 34.50 7.52 90/ 102 22.50 5.29
England 98/ 87 19.60 6.75 112/ 102 28.00 6.58

England's strong home record
England's one advantage, though, is their head-to-head record against India at home in the last nine years. In their last 15 such games - going back to 2004 - they have a 9-4 win-loss record, including three wins in the 2011 bilateral series.

India have had a few setbacks against England in their recent encounters, but in the only tournament final played between these two teams in ODIs, India came out on top in a memorable match, when they chased down 326 at Lord's in 2002. Come Sunday, and England will want to set that record straight.

England v India in ODIs
  Matches Ind won Eng won Tie/ NR
Overall 86 46 35 2/ 3
In England 33 11 18 1/ 3
Since 2004 in England 15 4 9 1/ 1
Tournament final 1 1 0 0

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. Follow him on Twitter

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • LovedFansofIndianCricket on June 23, 2013, 13:05 GMT

    @ GRVJPR. Sir, I did not mean that the WC win only due to Indian player know personally Srilankan player. There are many factors behind that great win. I am comparing that win and this CT. England is more strong opponent in English condition than any other country in Indian condition against Ind. Sorry mate, if it means different.

  • dummy4fb on June 23, 2013, 8:16 GMT

    we are expecting R aswin and R jadeja will make easy to win CT, apart from batting moustach Dhawan,Rohit, stylish V Kohli,Blaster Raina,sensible Dinesh and the Finishing touch of Captain D. Early break through from Kumar, Yadav and Ishant. ALL THE VERY BEST TO TEAM INDIA, BRING AND BREAK THE RECORDS OF CT.

  • Kangroos.Proteas.Monkeys.Lions on June 23, 2013, 7:59 GMT

    I am sure England will not let it go this time. If it is the last CT then should be won by England being the fathers of cricket. Also, Anglo-Indian rivalry is the most real of the recent times. England making impression both at home and in India while new look india performing after shedding some players who were more of a liability than reward. Also, english players largely avoid IPL so taking over them will not be that easy as it was for Australia, SL WI, or SA as Indian players will not be used to against them. Also bouncers from Anderson, Broad and Finn will make definite difference which will break the dominance of Rohhit, Dhawan, Kohli and the rest. Just english have to avoid Bopara bowling. Swann and Tredwell both will be needed. If india bowl first then english have to face the swing of indian quickmen and then spin attack.

  • GRVJPR on June 23, 2013, 7:14 GMT

    @DudeDesi It seems you are eagerly waiting for failure of Indian young openers so that you can push you case of sachin tendulkar comeback. I am spechless, you have become jealous of these two performing well. It's a real shame how people can't digest the youngsters success, it happens only in India.

  • GRVJPR on June 23, 2013, 7:12 GMT

    @LovedFansofIndianCricket What do you mean by saying that Indian players know the sri lankans well and that contributed to WC 2011 win. If that is the case then Sri lankan team also know about the Indian team as much as Indians do. It's illogical really to say that win was a result of knowing each other.

  • dummy4fb on June 23, 2013, 6:52 GMT

    india will rock today...................

  • Cricket_Allrounder on June 23, 2013, 6:07 GMT

    'England has the best bowling attack' - why do most people say this?? Nice article, See the overall bowling record of both the team.. Best in the sense, bowlers should perform in whatever conditions they are put into.. u all still rem what Sri Lankans did to England bowling this season.. The so called best bowler Anderson went for 50 in 10 overs.. I would rather say England is the team with some good and not the best players.. But definitely India has the best batting line up.. Everyone in Indian team can bat.. Right now compared to other teams, Tail enders can probably hang in there for more time..

    I don't see a chance of England winning this until and unless India have a bad day!!

  • dummy4fb on June 23, 2013, 6:02 GMT

    don't forget that indian fielding is very good. England have to work hard for the run

  • LovedFansofIndianCricket on June 23, 2013, 6:01 GMT

    It is not good thing to break the winning combination. But I think if we include Irfan or Vinay instead of Yadav. But in this stage it may be dangerous. But this final is great challenge to young indian team. I think they face tough challenge than WC 2011. Because it happened in Sub continent. Indian team knows condition better. It faced Srilanka more than anyone else. They know many Srilankan player personally very well(due to IPL). And SRT is in team and also he is best man to motivate youngsters. But this time we play in England. No SRT and Garry in the team to motivate youngsters. England have best attack and knows condition very well than Ind. But India has best fielding unit. I am big fan of Rohith and also best critics of Rohith. Pls Rohith don't throw your wicket in the Rush of blood. You are the best batsman in English condition than Virat. Pls take a leaf of Virat to build the Innings and try to win CT for India. All the best to Dhoni.

  • dummy4fb on June 23, 2013, 5:32 GMT

    Going by the performance numbers in this edition of the CT, India looks a clear winner outperforming England on most counts. But in a clash of completely contrasting styles - irresistible force v immoveable object? - the path to the ultimate denouement is likely to be strewn with tantalizing twists. Not good for heart if you are a passionate supporter of either side. But a mouthwatering prospect if you just sit back and enjoy the unfolding game. Ah, water! The damp squib can be the weather. Hope Duckworth is not let Lewis on this final.